The American Red Cross was founded by Clara Barton in 1881 and chartered by Congress in 1900. The building was built as a memorial to the women of the Civil War thanks to U.S. and private funds. It exemplifies the McMillan Plan emphasis on development facing the Ellipse.
Built in 1915-1917 with designs of architects A. Breck Trowbridge and Goodhue Livingston, the Red Cross headquarters features Classical Revival facades of white marble with front and side porticoes, Corinthian columns, a balustraded attic, a hipped roof, and tall chimneys. The interior includes a monumental stair hall, assembly hall with Tiffany stained glass, and a museum.
The complementary north building was built 1928‑1929; the west building was built in 1931.
DC designation: November 8, 1964
National Historic Landmark designation: June 23, 1965
National Register listing: October 15, 1966